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Round 2
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Stanley Cup Final

Pickard's 40 saves lifts Lake Erie Monsters over Toronto Marlies 4-0

Sunday, 10.14.2012 / 5:45 PM / News

The Canadian Press

TORONTO - Calvin Pickard made sure the Toronto Marlies didn't have a winning weekend to open the American Hockey League season.

The Lake Erie goalie turned aside all 40 shots he faced Sunday as the Monsters shut out Toronto 4-0.

"There wasn't much execution and when that's not there you need some heart and soul and we didn't get that from some of our guys today," said Toronto coach Dallas Eakins.

Geoff Walker, Tyson Barrie, Thomas Pock and Luke Walker scored for the Monsters, while Paul Carey and Mike Sgarbossa had two assists apiece. Pock also chipped in with a pair of assits for a three-point game in front of an announced crowd of 4,472 at Ricoh Coliseum.

"You get frustrated," said Eakins. "You've got to learn how to deal with frustration and stick with the game plan."

Lake Erie improved to 2-1-0 on the season, while the Marlies fell to 1-1-0. Toronto opened the 2012-13 AHL campaign with a 3-1 victory over Rochester on Saturday.

The Marlies outshot the Monsters 40-18, but couldn't solve the 20-year-old Pickard. After scoring three power play goals on Saturday, the Marlies went 0-for-11 with the man advantage on Sunday.

Pickard was the main reason for Toronto's ineffectiveness. The Monsters goalie denied Toronto centre Joe Colbourne on a second-period breakaway and stood tall in foiling six Marlies power plays in the middle period alone.

"We generated some chances, but we need to execute better," Colbourne said. "I just nicked the crossbar ... put that in and it changes the entire outlook of the game."

Toronto goalie Ben Scrivens made 14 saves in a losing effort as the Monsters led 2-0 after the first period and 3-0 through 40 minutes.

Walker opened the scoring when he whacked in his rebound at 8:23 of the first. After Toronto failed to connect on a 5-on-3 man advantage midway through the period, Barrie whirled around Marlies defenceman Leo Komarov at the blue-line and skated in and roofed a backhander over Scrivens’ blocker at 15:54.

"It was a mistake by me, a junior mistake," Komarov said. “It was a good play by (Barrie), but I just can't let that happen."

Pock scored the only power-play goal of the game — during another 5-on-3 Lake Erie man advantage — when his slapshot from the left point beat a screened Scrivens at 1:34 of the second period. Toronto had a 5-on-3 advantage shortly afterwards, but couldn't solve Pickard, who made 15 saves in the second.

Luke Walker put the game on ice when he skated in alone and deposited the puck into an empty net at 13:13 of the third after Eakins had pulled Scrivens in an effort to jump-start his team.

"It was 3-0 and we didn't have a whole lot going on," Eakins said. "Why wait until the last two minutes when you're down three goals?"

The Marlies are off until Friday when they visit the Hamilton Bulldogs in the first game of a home-and-home affair. The Monsters' next game is at Oklahoma City on Saturday.

For me, it's a great win for our hockey team and for a lot of people back in Columbus, especially our fans in particular … people who have been devoted to this organization, it's big.

— Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards on their win vs. the Penguins in Game 2, the franchise's first-ever Stanley Cup Playoff victory